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Apple Rankings (applerankings.com)
1017 points by bookofjoe 10 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 462 comments

He's got Granny Smith in the shit category, and this just reminds me of a funny story about dogs!

We had two corgis and my wife made all their meals by hand. Part of their diet was apples, but we found one of the corgis would almost always eat around the apple (usually just a cheap red apple) pieces and leave them for the other dog. Then one time Granny Smith apples were cheaper at the grocery store so that is what we purchased and provided. He ate them up!

Turns out the dog just didn't like the sweeter apples and wanted the tart tang of a good Granny Smith.

Came here to say that this invalidates the entire list!

Great to see this as the top comment!

Red Delicious 25

Granny Smith 53

McIntosh 45

Cortland 24

Either I have never had a good apple or there is something off with this list and the reviews. Could it be they are using imported or out of season apples?

This list is pretty much the apples I have access to locally and they are all perceivably better than some of the international variety that are ranked higher on that website.

The comment section for Cortland is savage and honestly I agree with a lot of it.

Red Delicious was described as "mealy", which sounds like an out of season apple. The science behind long term storage of apples made it really common to have edible apples all year round but when critiquing you've got to take freshness into account.

This site has a comedy bend but with all the interest I'd love to see it embrace a rotten tomatoes kind of style (the critics vs. the masses).

I've had red deliciouses direct from the farmstand and they're mealy. They really are just bad.

Nothing says delicious like having to put that in the name, right?

Actually powerful people don’t go around saying how powerful and important they are. They don’t need to.

I've found that to be a universal truism in marketing. If your product is missing some important attribute, put it into the name. The power of suggestion overcomes reality. The Red Delicious apple is the very product that hammered this home for me.

apparently the red delicious was selectively bred for appearance over taste and texture according to an article (which i cannot find) i read a few years ago (and somehow retained this information).

now the darlings are, apparently, pink lady and honeycrisp, which are both excellent apples.

Every golden and red delicious apple I’ve ever had I would describe as “mealy” though. In Australia we don’t get many of these varieties but Pink Lady is my favourite so I’m tentatively happy to back this list in.

That’s only because you have terrible taste in apples. :)

Seriously though, who rates Braeburn at 73 and Cortland at 24? They’re really not that different if you get them fresh.

It sounds like they found their test Cortlands in a wet bag behind a dumpster.

I suspect the author of the website has no time for tart apples, seems there's a bias for sweetness.

I suspect the author has a sample size of one for some of these varietals. Some of these descriptions are… off.

I have a corgi and that tracks for me. To people who don't have corgs, they're sweet kind friendly cute delicate beautiful creatures. The those of us who have been blessed with corgs in our lives, we know they're really the Frank Reynolds of dogs. And I love my corg for it. She's a trash dog, a scrappy little scamp, and knows that everyone else she meets will never, ever know it.

All of their top picks are red, and the two I've tried are too sweet and bland at the same time.

I'll pick a Granny Smith any day over any red apple, the authors of this "ranking" appear quite arrogant in their pretentiousness.

Then again, I eat lemons whole so what do I know.

I absolutely love sour foods, to the point of drinking straight up lemon juice when I was younger. I eat a granny smith apple probably every other day, and the more sour the better. Yet, my S.O. recoils at the thought of eating granny smiths. I wonder why people have such varied responses when it comes to sour foods.

Their 3rd highest rated apple is incredibly sour.

Seems to only be available half a year from now where I am, will try to remember.

you can listen to him rant about the Granny Smith at the end of this interview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zohlRKE49wo pretty funny

“Granny Smith apple”

“Oh boy... Alright you just made a mistake”

Dogs are as unique as people :)

All 3 of my dogs love love love bananas. To the point where they can be dead asleep and they wake up from the sound of peeling the banana. My guess is they all would have preferred the sweeter apples over the tart ones.

I had a dog who loved watermelon. She was a (rescue) pug too so you can imagine the mess she made of that.

Even on her deathbed, literal hours before crossing the bridge, she still managed a little.

(Wow, I’m 45, it’s been nearly 5 years and I suddenly started crying after writing that. Goddamn I miss that dog. RIP Lucy.)

(I defensively stated rescue as I’m often assailed with ‘pugs should not exist’ replies. I tend to agree. But they do. So let’s give them the best lives possible and pressure breeders not guardians. Guardian instead of owner. I don’t want to own a sentient being. Semantics maybe but language changes attitudes and you all let that 02022 is the year guy do his schtick!)

No explanation needed. We have 3 frenchies - also rescues. People get them, realize their vets bills are insane, and then dump them off. They are also a big breed in puppy mills that get shut down. We have spent an inordinate amount of money on frenchies over the years (we've had 5 - not at the same time, but 2 died prematurely from health issues), but these dogs didn't chose be here, and deserve a good life.

You're both doing incredible work. It's heart breaking losing a dog, it's raw for me now currently I'm still in the crying-almost-daily stage.

Not too dissimilar to me, though I don't often go breed specific but age. I've foster failed a few dogs in the last 6-7 years. I lost my recent foster fail Buster on the 2nd of November and I only got him back from the crematorium yesterday.

It's been a rough few weeks, this home has only ever been a home with Buster in it and it's been dreadfully empty with his passing. I cry every day I see something that reminds me of him.

Baby gates that stop him going up and down stairs because of his arthritis. His dog beds in each room which he would follow us when my partner and I worked from home. Food bowls. His blankets to keep him old bones warm. Coming home or getting out of bed and him not being there to howl at me. It's truly dreadful.

Buster was 14.5 years old when he passed and was 12 yo when I adopted him. I didn't believe his age when I adopted him. He was a Husky X Boxer so I could only imagine what he was like as a puppy considering his appetite for movement at 12 yo when he was effectively 100+ in human years.

Some pictures of Buster: https://imgur.com/gallery/WtLy4ZN/comment/2279131045

I want to wait a while before fostering or adopting again but... I'm getting warn down by all the dogs that are needing a home from the groups I volunteer and donate to. I'm doom scrolling dogs in need daily.

Oh lilbytes,

My heart goes out to you.

I know exactly how you feel my only advice is to do your best to let those feelings come. Wallow a little. Feel and experience your grief.

Locking it away doesn’t work and the tears will become fond smiles in time.

Wishing you peace.

I'm so sorry. I feel for you and don't have any advice to give. Reading your post and looking at the pictures of Buster have me tearing up.

I've often wondered what makes our bonds with dogs so tight. I often joke with my partner that I wish she looked at me like one of our dogs does.

It's a reminder to show the people and animals around you how much you care about them everyday.

When you're ready, the next dog that finds you will be lucky find a person who cares so much.

My dog seems to prefer apples based purely on their crispiness.

Also Braeburn is mediocre?!?1

Now this is the kind of important tech/nerd info that I come to HN for! 10/10


I'm only familiar with several of the varieties on this page, but I definitely agree with the rankings. We used to buy Gala, Fuji or Juici, since there were the cheapest at the store and we didn't know better, but once we tried Honeycrisp we never went back. (Cosmic Crisp also ok but not as good. I'd also rank Envy a bit lower.)

Also, best cider I've had is from Honeycrisp apples.

Red/Golden Delicious are tasteless garbage. Granny Smith is ok for particular dishes so I'd probably rank it a bit higher.

As other commenters have said, apples can be pretty variable in flavor. Many are not keepers or go flavorless fast. The last couple of bags of Gala's I've bought have been very good. The flavor doesn't keep for long and the become pretty bland.

I don't care for Honeycrisp at all, fresh or not. Too high of a sugar to acid balance. I prefer my apples with a bit of a tang. Cosmic crisp can be great. For the more common apples, I really like Empire and Pink Lady (Cripp's Pink) as well.

I don't agree with any of this guy's ratings at all, he seems to only like the really sweet apples.

I think Golden Delicious can be delicious but they have to be just right. Red are the absolute worst, though.

Agree. I think they underrate Cartland and Jonagold but maybe it’s because I am a New Yorker. I think Honeycrips is OK but not stellar.

If you can find a Kanzi, you need to try them. By far the best Apple available.

I've actually had very good red/golden delicious when picking them myself at a local orchard. Not sure if they degrade so quickly that freshness was the difference or if the local farm was growing a slightly different varietal less designed for transport and storage.

Whatever truth there is to the rapid degradation, for at least red delicious there’s a long time for degradation because they’re staples in mass markets which don’t otherwise stock fresh fruit (eg schools, convenience stores). Who knows how long those apples have traveled or rested waiting to be consumed.

I am actually now interested in trying one of these "Arkansas Black", "Cortland", or "Newtown Pippin" apples just to see if an apple can really be worse than a Red Delicious.

I hadn't thought such a thing was possible till now.

Cortlands get mushy and flavorless quickly, even if refrigerated, and so are bad supermarket apples. But I'd rather have one straight off the tree than any of their top rated apples.

I’ll come to the defense of Arkansas Blacks. They are definitely better than Red Delicious. They’re just really hard and quite tart with a faint green flesh. Red Delicious are mealy and tasteless.

I love the Arkansas Blacks, but they wouldn’t be everyone’s cup of tea.

I love Arkansas Blacks! They have a hint of cardamom aftertaste, which makes them unique!

I took up the Arkansas Black cause from my grandmother who was born in the 1800's. They are unarguably hard. That contributes to them being amazing baking apples. Unfortunately whoever created this list of apples seems to have never considered eating apples that were baked in foods. Not even a mention of baking apples vs. eating apples appears on the site. Some varieties are good for baking and eating. Then there are those worthless for either (ie. red delicious.)

Pippins are in season here and they seem to be exceptionally high in tannins and not too prone to turning mealy. They're not great for snacking but I bet they'd go really well in a pie.

To be fair, there is a huge difference in how some of these apples taste coming straight off the tree at the right moment, and in the supermarket.

I once spent a month blind taste-testing apples with my wife to compare the apples in our supermarket. We learned 4 things:

1) Most of the Honeycrisp varietals that make it to market are good (Wild Twist and Cosmic Crisp being our favorites), but…

2) The time of year makes a HUGE difference. It seems obvious when I say it, but different varietals from different farms are best in different weeks. Honeycrisp has an advantage here because it has so many growers that someone is keeping a batch in good condition for practically every week of the year.

3) You have to go by the apples in your local market. Lists like these are hard to use because there are many more apples on it than you have available to choose from - most grocery stores only stock 3-10 varieties depending on time of year

4) Your use case is critical. Obviously baking a pie requires a different apples from eating, but even if you are just eating the apples raw there are differences. Some apples beat others in texture when cut up, but have the wrong density to eat by biting down on the apple

After all our testing, we mostly went back to Honeycrisp because it’s so reliable.

I remember going to one of the local markets and asked the guy putting out the apples if the organic apples were really worth it.

He immediately pulled out an organic apple (fuji if I recall correctly) and the same type, but non-organic. He cut out a slice of each apple and let me taste it.

The organic apple had significantly better flavor.

He explained that the drawback was that the organic apples would go bad quickly so you should only buy what you need, and eat them promptly.

> The organic apple had significantly better flavor.

What are you concluding from that? You can get the same apple 1 week apart and have a significantly different experience.

Or you could get the same apple at the same time from different batches and have a significant difference.

Or you could get two apples from the same batch at the same time and they could vary a lot.

Well, I suspect at a minimum that the organic apples were turned over quicker, and possibly were picked recently.

Anecdotally, I find this to be the case with many fruits, especially citrus. I always figured that a lemon is a lemon and a lime is a lime, but after getting into cocktails and mixology, I realized that there is a night-and-day difference between high-quality fruit and the cheap stuff at your discount grocery store. This doesn't mean organic fruit is always strictly better, but I have found it to be a pretty reliable proxy for quality.

Fruit at the discount grocery store is usually old/nearing end of life. Citrus, and limes in particular, get noticeably more bitter as they age and oxidize.

This actually leads to a schism in European/American bartending. Europe juices their citrus a la minute, so the juice has no time to oxidize, making the acid component punchier. American bars pre-juice before service, and it has time to mellow out a little.

Someone (Dave Arnold maybe) ran a blind taste test with bartenders from Europe and America and found that the their preferences lined up with the customs in their country.

Personally I follow the Europeans. Not because I like it better, but because I don’t have the kind of foresight to juice hours before I’m making drinks :-)

And god forbid you have premade line juice. Roses is the absolute worst (and people keep bringing it to make daquaris), but the extra effort for fresh juiced is worth it.

You might want to reconsider that, at least for homemade pre-made juice: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2RA3AaCO7A8

I love Super Juice! If I'm going to have friends over for a get together or party, I'll make a batch (or multiple if I want more than 1 fruit) a few days ahead of time to increase the speed in which drinks can be made. The downside is that garnishes still generally tend to need peels, so I still need to have a couple real fruits hanging around.

For garnishes, unless expressing the oil of a citrus peel is essential to the aroma of your cocktail (like in a Negroni), my "hack" has been to dehydrate citrus wheels as garnish. You can get ~2-3 wheels out of the middle of every citrus fruit and use the rest for super juice. Plus, they look really cool.

Thank you for the link. I hadn't heard of this, and I'm going to give it a try now!

Rose's is barely juice, probably only really suitable for gimlets. You can get straight lemon/lime juice in glass bottles. I find that works as a mostly fine alternative if I don't feel like squeezing.

We got organic bananas because the regular bananas were all green. They were SO GOOD. Bananas are so damn cheap overall we just always get the organic ones and they do seem overall better.

That's because conventional store apples are coated with wax and organic ones are not. Wax often has bad, usually bitter, taste and unpleasant texture.

Organic apples are not coated with wax, so they taste better, but will dry up faster.

I’ve long held a notion that organic produce is better mostly because it’s fresher - it has to be since it doesn’t have an unnaturally long shelf life.

Point #4 is totally on point!

I slice lots of apples to share with my kid and there is such an unexpected difference depending on the variety we buy. Some apples really benefit from being cut into wedges!

I agree as well, rating apples without considering the use case is a critical oversight! Kenji set the apple rating bar pretty high:


I love our local farmers market during peak apple season. There are maybe 20 varieties to try across the different farms, more if you consider each farm's variant it own thing. Sadly we still have covid restrictions preventing food-tasting.

> 2) The time of year makes a HUGE difference. It seems obvious when I say it, but different varietals from different farms are best in different weeks.

Exactly. Don't expect to get a good apple in March. Eat something else instead.

I grew up in the apple producing capital of the world.

There is no such thing as a fresh apple in retail. They are all picked just before they are ripe and stored in massive cold storage rooms with all the oxygen pumped out. Apples can spend up to two year in storage, and the best tasting sweetest apples are often the ones that have been stored the longest because they form more sugars.

Your entire concept of when an apple is good or not boils down to the time between when the ethylene is pumped into the room to start ripening to when you put it in your mouth.

As with everything it depends. The heirloom varieties that make it to grocery stores (at least in the Bay Area) have a short enough window each year that they're definitely not being kept in cold storage for too long. The window of availability for something like Gravensteins and Pink Pearls out here is about a month.

The sweetest apples you're talking about are probably the mealy ones folks are complaining about (although some varieties are more prone to becoming mealy than others).

> The window of availability for something like Gravensteins and Pink Pearls out here is about a month.

The window for pretty much all apples is a few weeks. That is exactly why they all go to cold storage. If the growers don't pack them directly into storage the brokers and wholesalers will. Apples are worth more in the off season.

Unless you are shopping at a farmers market or a roadside stand, they have spent some time in a CA room.

> The sweetest apples you're talking about are probably the mealy ones folks are complaining about

Mealy apples are caused by the cell walls breaking down. The most common cause is refrigeration after they have been chemically ripened. Either spending too much time in the refrigerated grocery logistics chain or in your refrigerator at home.

Right. And out here the heirlooms I'm talking about are only in stores for a couple weeks (a month at longest)… because they're not likely being kept in cold storage.

> The most common cause is refrigeration after they have been chemically ripened.

We often experiment between organic and nonorganic apples, and in my experience, it seems like the organic apples are way more prone to being mealy, suggesting that it’s not (in this case) what you’re describing.

While the technology for cold-storing apples is impressive, I don't believe most apples do well after two years in storage.

According to https://extension.umd.edu/resource/keeping-it-cool-cold-stor... the maximum is 6 months, while some apples can handle only 1-2 months.

According to https://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/bk-2007-0956.ch020?cook... the antioxidant activity in apples gradually drops off after three months of storage in the cold. An apple stored for nearly a year will have almost no antioxidants remaining in it whatsoever.

This definitely fits with my experience that apples bought just before the seasons starts (so 11 months in storage) are not worth eating; and the best apples are the ones picked straight from the tree.

I get Honeycrisp at my local market that I don't like much (other bags are great).

I have some hope that the newer trademarked varieties will be able to/choose to control for growing conditions so that they are more consistent.

You spent a whole month? You must be a big fan of apples.

> Apple Rankings by The Appleist Brian Frange

Well Brian, if you're reading this, then know that at this present juncture I fear your taste is quite awful. You are contributing to the infantilisation of flavour preferences by ranking such sweet varieties so highly. I bid you humble yourself by exploring some real vintage apples for a year, and report back advocating for those. Then book a trip to Wales and work in the cider and perry orchards. Then climb a high mountain. Then you must go to Kazakhstan and try all the OG varieties there, eating them from the ground like the bears that did so since time immemorial. Then when you are forty seven years old, you must sell all your possessions and buy a big field to be in for a while before planting there an orchard and rearing young bears. Then you must retail those apples from a roadside packing shed for forty years. Only after you have done at least one of these things may you write about apples on the internet.

Thank you Tiger Lily for your insight into the world of apples.

Anybody who'd give the two top slots to sweet tango and honeycrisp-- the proprietary, designed-by committee apples that prioritize inoffensive, bland appeal over character-- doesn't deserve an opinion on this topic. It's like ranking a bazillion craft beers and giving the #1 slot to Blue Moon and the #2 slot to Sam Adams. They're the Applebee's and Olive Garden of Apples.

Also, the descriptions show that the majority of what they've tasted were probably out of season, not ripe or overripe, and likely shipped a long distance. You might as well rank US pizza shops but only tasting them at home, delivered... even if they're across the country.

I wouldn't be surprised if this was a shill either for the people who own the honeycrisp patents, or someone who's licensed the breed and grows a lot of them.

OK let's go, give us your top 3 favs.

From the moment I enrolled in culinary school a decade-and-a-half ago, people started asking me to rank all sorts of food things, usually with the intent of confirming whatever their pet favorite was. I think it's just as ridiculous now as I did back then.

Just like any other produce, the best variety depends on culinary context, season, setting, and geographic location. I've had about a dozen and a half varieties of apples fresh off the tree and there's more good/bad variance between individual apples than there is between varietals. The only ones I consistently dislike are the delicious varieties. Pulling a fresh, bright red McIntosh off of the tree in early October is an experience that rarely disappoints.

The new proprietary apples are designed to be extremely commercially useful-- essentially a replacement for the more opinionated and less pleasant red delicious-- and they succeeded. They will be "pleasant" and very sweet for more than 6 months in refrigeration without atmosphere modification, but even right off the tree, they're not really different than they are in month 7. Sweet. No real character. They're also living material that was initially patented, which is automatically a black mark in my book. That anybody would be sued for patent infringement by putting a seed in the ground and growing it is pretty fucked up.

I can't name many more types of apples than "Fuji", "McIntosh", "Rome", "Red Delicious", "Gala", "Granny Smith", and "Honeycrisp", but I feel like Honeycrisp apples are too perfect - too sweet, too crisp, but somehow not as apple-y as other varieties.

If you only have one Honeycrisp after years of eating Fujis and Galas it will hit you like a ton of bricks with how good it is compared to what you've been eating. You might even wonder why you would bother to get anything else. But it's soo saccharine, so uniformly "good" that it gets old fast IMO. Hard to explain, but sometimes I'd rather have something that tastes more like a good old fashioned apple and less like apple juice in apple form.

If you're eating Fuji and Gala Apples that aren't in season or weren't picked when they were ripe, sure. However, both of those varieties are vastly more interesting than Honeycrisp when ripe and in season. Honeycrisp's advantage is being "good" for 7 months even if it's never "great." Fuji and Gala can be "great," but are usually picked under-ripe to ship well and extend shelf life, and they sit around far too long; they were picked too soon to be "good" and will be sold long after they're less good than that. Just about they only thing they're OK for at that point is making sweet cider.

Growing up in New England, I always thought Washington's much-touted apples were shit until I had one on the west coast. They're just as good as ours, but out here we only get the ones that were intended for shipping, and they'll always be vastly inferior. The reverse is true, also.

FWIW Cox Orange, Belle de Boskoop, and Sturmer. Honorable mention goes to Southern Snap.

My favorite are these narrow cylindrical green apples that grown in my mom's backyard. They are tart but not as tart as granny Smith, very chewy, and have a bit of bitterness and a strong tannin flavor. Beats everything else by a mile. No idea what they are called though.

Pink Lady, Pink Pearl, Gravenstein. Honorable mention to Rhode Island Green and Pippin if you like 'em tart.

Just FWIW re your last sentence, per Wikipedia the US patent for the Honeycrisp cultivar expired in 2008..

Good to know.

For those who need re-assurance:

> Brian Frange is a comedian and writer who has been yelling about apples for years. [...] Brian is not in the pocket of big apple and all reviews are inarguably accurate and not corrupted by corporate influence.

According to those apple ratings, he has quite the sweet tooth!

Honestly - I think this list prioritizes basically just "sweetness" and "crispness" (despite his claimed categories) which is fine - those are generally appealing things for eating. That said - many of the apples in the "shit" category are fucking delicious.

There are days when I want a sweet, crisp apple, and there are days I have a serious hankering for a good ol' granny smith.

Even the classic Red Delicious - which gets a really tarnished name in current pop culture is actually a damn good apple... soft, slightly chewy, sweet - but not too sweet, a little hint of bitter in the skin - it's just a different experience than the super sweet, juicy apples that start to just taste like apple juice.

Then again - I really like apples, and I'm vaguely suspicious that the site maker just likes sugar water.

Even assuming the flavor of red delicious was at all palatable in any sense of the word, it's impossible to get past the fact that they have the tepid texture of water soaked pile of corrugated cardboard. I think you may be an outlier.

They are, I was shocked to discover, delicious and crisp, but you have 30 seconds to eat them after picking before they turn into the horror you describe so eloquently.

This is most certainly the real culprit. There are undoubtedly markets where the Red Delicious lives up to its name. The rest of us end up with whatever freshness roulette is played by the local supplier; while I too have occasionally eaten a 'good' one, the number of times I end up with an abomination in my taste buds far outweighs it.

Yeah, I even bought one from a local farmstand to see if they really were better fresh. Nope.

First apple I looked up was Red Delicious, just to see if they're ranked as badly as I think they are. "Coffee Grinds in a Leather Glove" is the tagline for that apple!

> Even the classic Red Delicious

You are right about the flavor profile - but Red Delicious gets its bad rap from being mealy.

Now that might be due to historical transport and storage practices during the era when Red Delicious reigned supreme, in which case it is indeed a bad rap. But for me crispness is king and I remember eating mealy red delicious apples at school lunch and hating them. I had no problems with the apples my mother bought which were all sorts of non-Red-Delicious varities.

I used to like red delicious as a kid and my perception is that they got worse over time. I still like the other apples I ate as a kid. So I don’t know if this is all in my mind or not.

You're probably right, not sure how old you are but growers kept selectively breeding solely for appearance up to (I think) the 2010s.

Appearance and shelf life. That's how an apple attracts a buyer on a store shelf.

Once you've bought grocery in a store, you're not going to return it if it's so-so but not outright dangerously rotten. And your choice of large stores nearby is limited, so you're not going to stop going to that store.

I love Golden Delicious apples. To me they are the standard of what a green apple should taste like. Crisp and tart, truly an amazing apple. Rating on this site was a 33. I suspect you're right that sweet was the highest priority.

I also really like HoneyCrisp but I would rate it in the 70s, not the 90s.

A golden delicious is neither crisp (mealy) nor tart (bland, watery)- are you thinking of Granny Smith?

I've had some spectacular Golden Delicious apples. I hypothesize that these otherwise mealy apples in the right condition have a soft pearish texture rather than a crisp cucumber-like one, but it is a fragile structure that degrades more rapidly.

It very much depends on when and where you buy them.

Fresh, these are superb. After a week on a shelf, they get soft and a bit bland.

> I love Golden Delicious apples. To me they are the standard of what a green apple should taste like.

Nor are Golden Delicious' green, so I guess they do mean Granny Smith

Down here in the Netherlands most Golden Delicious are green, only seldom are they yellow. Mealy is when they are not saved well, more often they have a bit of bite. And juicy they are. It might differ per region.

I love apples - even blogged about them once.

I agree with the assessment of Red Delicious - it's just garbage. Being fed them as a kid put me off apples for years. I don't mind the taste of them when cooked or something, but the floury nature of them when eaten fresh is just horrible.

I'd be interested in what you think of Jazz apples? To me they are somewhat similar to Red Delicious in taste but the crispness (is there a more crisp apple? I don't think so) makes them a much better experience.

Eh - I think the Red Delicious is a complicated apple. It's also hard to accurately judge because for a long time - it was one of the most propagated apples out there, and sadly - time matters a lot for this one. So unless you know they're coming from somewhere very close to you, it's probably too old for hand eating (although I still do it - I don't hate the texture).

It doesn't go bad quickly, but it certainly loses a lot of its luster very quickly off the tree. It gets progressively more mealy the longer it's been stored.

Which... is the second point - older Red Delicious don't make great hand eating apples because they've lost the texture appeal, but they make a really important part of things like apple tarts or pies. I certainly wouldn't recommend only a red delicious pie - since you basically end up with mush, but they really help hold together a pie when mixed in with other apples. I personally love a pie with 1 red delicious, 1 granny smith, and then 4 filler apples (honey crisp is easy to find and tasty - but I actually prefer Rome, since they're not as sweet).

Cut the Red Delicious and Granny Smith up more finely than the other 4, so they mix in well. A lot of recipes say things like "no mushy pies!" but that's not really right - what they mean is that the whole pie shouldn't just be mush, but having a little mush in there is critical - otherwise you end up with apple bricks between layers of pie crust, and it's just really lackluster. That Red Delicious in there is going to help soak up some of the water coming out of the other apples, and give a nice contrast to the firmness/tartness from the granny smith. Then the filler apples are there for sweetness/apple flavor.

Long story short - I've talked myself into making another apple pie this weekend...

You might find this breakdown of popular american supermarket apples (in the context of pie):


That list is incomplete without honey crisp being listed

Without having tried it... honeycrisp would be very likely to make a terrible apple pie due to too much water and sweetness.

A waste of money, too. They're 3-4x as expensive as the other apples here.

The second to the top apple is listed for tartness isn't it?

Everyone in my family loves Granny Smiths, even the 4 year old. Her apple consumption greatly increases every time they're in season.

The top varieties listed here are indeed good but I quickly come to find their sweetness cloying. Meanwhile I'll eat a 5 lb bag of good Granny Smiths in a week.

Which brings us to another important point about apples. They have to be in season. If you get off-season Grannies from Chile, you're in for a leathery/papery-skinned, mealy disappointment.

Peak Granny season in the US is early/mid-fall, aka right now.

I always peel granny smiths, so much better imo.

The best apple I ever had was a Fuji apple… in Japan.

It's never that crisp in the US.

I don't know why they rank Cosmic Crisp so low. I rank it neck and neck with SweeTango.

Came here to say the same thing about Fuji apples. They're great from all aspects, juicy, nice taste, crisp/crunchy and you can keep them for many days without going bad. I don't know about the author or other places, but here in Greece we get them produced locally and they're always fresh and delicious.

(Obviously I'm a Fuji apple lover :-) )

Organic Fuji apples in US can be pretty good, I certainly wouldn't categorize them as "Horse Food" as the site does. I like them better than Honeycrisp (and similar) which are almost sickeningly sweet to me.

I also like Gala which this site ranks as "mediocre". It seems like the author just likes super sweet, crisp apples.

I have to agree that Cosmic Crisp was unfairly ranked here. I did a blind tasting of ten apple varietals with 14 friends and Cosmic Crisp was the winner.

Probably out of season.

We can get cosmic crisps here year round, but they're usually out of season as a result. One of the good things about cosmic crisp is they don't really go super bad out of season, just almost-good.

I don't even understand why this guy gave Fuji so low, a lot of Japanese fruits are another level.

I will have them all day if only they weren't so expensive.

I’m also a Fuji fan, it seems they either aren’t as consistent or don’t travel well. In the western US they are a serviceable and solid pick..

Most other apples give me heartburn, but Fuji are very good.

I think taste may vary so that list is based on that person's opinion and taste-buds.

They have really high standards in general for fruit in Japan.

Perhaps, but the prices are far far higher than would be justified by any increase in quality. And I'm not just talking about $5000 Densuke watermelons. Even a mango can be 3 or 4 times the price I'm used to paying in Aus.

I don't know what's with the hate on Granny Smith. I love Granny Smith apples. They are especially good for making Waldorf salad. They are also my favorite to eat with honey at new years. They have a nice crispy texture and are delightfully tangy.

I eat a granny smith every day. They don't deserve this ranking, and this is absolutely a hill I will...uh... lie down on. Not die on.

I pair it with some cheddar cheese.

Another good pairing with cheddar cheese is Mcintosh. When they're in season, they're great.

Lately I haven't been able to find mcintosh apples in the store (or if I did, they're mushy and gross). I suspect that's the case with a lot of these apples. The Mcintosh apples I got in Connecticut were great, but here in Texas they are trash.

Mmm. I like Granny Smith apples with cheddar cheese too. Especially in toasted-cheese form.

Purely as a standalone apple, the Granny Smith does NOT (in most opinions, it seems) hold its own against other apples. A 1v1 challenge against some of the more popular apples seemingly places the GS as the loser.

However, you mentioned the pairing and combinational use of the GS, which is where it shines. Granny Smith is meant to be dipped, diced, baked, smothered, cheesed, etc. The GS goes way up in rankings, when you pair it with other foods.

I think that's why GS is low on the rankings. It's probably getting a bit harsh of a review on that site, I grant you, but again I don't think it holds up as a standalone apple quite the same as others.

I don't really eat any apple by itself. I don't find it to be a very good fruit on its own regardless of variety.

Me too. And they last forever and are still good and crisp.

This list entirely ignores many of the highest rated apples. Adam's Apples, a long time apple reviewer, has six top ranked apples ("three stars, exceptional apple worth a quest"), all of which are exceptionally hard to find.


Thanks, it has my recommendation Topaz as a "two-star" :)

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Topaz_(apple) as

In-season macoun remains my favorite and is relatively easy to find out here in east-central vt. Cox's orange pippin however.... that's my favorite and it is so hard to find.

Reasonably similar and slightly easier to find is Chestnut Crab - Moore's Orchard in Pomfret grows them.



>Oh how the mighty have fallen! Believe it or not, the coffee grinds in a leather glove known as “The Red Delicious Apple” was once a robust firebrand credited with reinventing the apple from mere cider-fruit into a full-fledged lunch-worthy sidepiece. It even won the Stark Brothers apple contest in 1894. Likely your great-grandma’s favorite apple, this once flavorful Prometheus has been mass-produced into desolation.

> Nowadays, you can find this thick-skinned, flavorless, mealy imposter unwashed in a dirty wicker basket on the floor of a convenience store. What a sad state of affairs. It’s time to hang them up old man, your time has passed.

It seems to have inspired an even better review, of the Golden Delicious:

> [...] with our collective distaste for the Red Delicious fully realized, this ill-fated adopted brother may as well be called the “Golden Bin Laden.”

I have a golden delicious tree in my yard, and the apple are amazingly good. I wonder if there isn't a bias against apples like red delicious, yellow delicious and Granny Smith that store very well and may be getting stale at the time of purchase. For example, mealiness is usually an indication that an apple is getting stale.

Weirdly, this isn’t the first bias I’ve seen against the golden delicious — which is still one of my favorites — and excessive fawning over the honeycrisp.

I suppose I don’t disagree with a lot of elements in the general order ranking, but listing the honeycrisp as a 90-point apple and the GD at 33 seems…extreme.

(And I fully realize the absurdity in calling an online ranking of apples “extreme”)

Most of the apples in grocery stores have been in storage for months since most are harvested in fall and have been sprayed with diphenylamine (DPA), an antioxidant that slows the development of black patches on the skin. DPA is banned in the EU because a byproduct of it when it breaks down, nitrosamine, is a carcinogen.

I love apples, but since finding this out, I try to avoid eating them out of season.

This article fails to mention DPA, but is interesting nonetheless! https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2018/11/26/668256349/th...

I fucking love science!!

Sorry, I just hate the world we’ve built. I would so much rather live in a world where my apples are not poison but only are around during the fall.

But, capital return requirements and the remorseless scythe of competition exist, so instead we get poison apples available year round.

Would washing the apple thoroughly not remove the nitrosamine byproduct? Genuinely curious.

This list reeks of middle-brow hipster ignorance:

1. If you’re judging an apple by its year round availability (as the site creator does), then you’ve basically admitted that you’re only randomly running into apples that are at their best. Some apples are amazing at their peak, but very mediocre when not at their peak.

2. As others have mentioned, there are many variables that influence the texture, taste, and appearance of an apple. If you live far away from where the apples are grown, you will mostly see either the negative side of these variables or the downsides introduced by breeding that allow these apples to get to your market. We don’t even know the geographic base(s) of the author.

I really appreciate the author’s effort, but the execution and/or presentation needs a lot of work.

I’m sure that a tour of orchards that are far from where the author lives would have him rethinking many of his rankings.

>This list reeks of middle-brow hipster ignorance

I agree! For example, a lot of their complaint about Cosmic Crisp is the marketing campaign around it. Like, buddy, that apple tree didn’t design stickers or write press releases. It makes no sense to penalize the apple itself for that.

This is an entertainment site maintained by a comedian

And I’m quite entertained by criticizing it!

The SweeTango apple was developed by the University of Minnesota (UM), which also developed its parents, the Honeycrisp and Zestar! apples. Accordingly, SweeTango is intellectual property owned by UM and licensed to our farmer cooperative of 47 growers that sell the fruit throughout the United States and Canada. In fact, our growers lease the trees.


You omitted the link that has a lot more detail about why they chose to license it this way:


> 44 apple growers… are members of “Next Big Thing, A Growers’ Cooperative” (NBT)… across the United States and Canada. Their ranks include both small and large producers…

> NBT was the brainchild of Minnesota apple grower Dennis Courtier, owner of Pepin Heights Orchards Inc. While Minnesota is a small player in the U.S. apple industry, ranked 20 out of 29 commercially producing states in 2014, Courtier is well known in the industry for new variety innovation. He was one of the first commercial producers to grow and market Honeycrisp apples in the 1990s. Honeycrisp — a “fruit phenomenon” produced by the University of Minnesota’s (UMN) apple-breeding program — has turned the apple category on its head. By 2014, it had rocketed to become the No. 6 apple variety in the United States, based on production.

> Honeycrisp saved [Courtier’s] orchards, but soon it was being grown in geography it wasn’t suited to, and, arguably, being overgrown. The university had released it as an “open variety” — meaning that after paying a small royalty to a variety’s developer, any grower can buy Honeycrisp trees and sell the fruit as they wish.

> If apple growers were to be financially healthy in the long term, Courtier felt that apple production and marketing would have to change.

There is also this description about one of the co-op members (which may explain why other commenters have different opinions about Red Delicious)…

> The Clarks watched the decline of the Red Delicious (Reds) variety from a front-row seat. Chelan was historically known for producing prime-quality Reds. Then the variety was “bred to grow red” in parts of the state that weren’t good “terroir” (or growing territory) for it. That fruit didn’t taste as good or store as well.

> The variety’s popularity with consumers fell far and fast…

> “As consumers ourselves, we know that if we consumers don’t get a good apple, we don’t come back for a while,” says Bill Clark. “NBT is managing who grows an apple, where it grows, what the eating experience is. That’s paramount to the variety’s sustainability

Edit: formatting

> SweeTango is intellectual property owned by UM and licensed to our farmer cooperative

That is some Monsanto bullshit wrapped up in a quirky "small growers" story.

Nobody "owns" living organisms.

This ranking seems pretty plausible to me if you're buying your apples at the supermarket. It gives good marks to varieties which maintain their texture through weeks (or months!) of refrigeration.

On the other hand, if you're at an apple orchard and deciding what to pick to eat right now, this is not the list for you. A Cortland, McIntosh, or Macoun right off the tree easily beats a Honey/Cosmic/etc crisp.

I came here to say this about the Cortland Apple. Right off the tee it is so good. In the supermarket, not so much.

Yep. I live in New England, and in the fall it is easy to get fresh Macs and Cortlands, and always so much better than what is in the supermarkets most of the time. Honeycrisps are just too sweet (don't get me started about sweet corn!).

I wish it was easier to tell when just touching them.

I love fresh Empire apples, but give them two weeks and they go from highly crisp to mealy. It's always a gamble even at the farmstand which one I'm going to get.

Agreed. Yeah, Cortlands turn to mealy mush quickly, I admit that. But when they're fresh and crisp, they're absolutely amazing. This site does them dirty.

Missing my favourite apple: Aurora. This is the best apple by far. Last long, taste is amazing (though maybe a bit too sweet after a while). I can't rarely find them. Does anyone know how to track down where apples are grown?

Assuming you mean the Aurora Golden Gala, this is also my favourite with Honeycrisp a close second. The only place I have ever found them for sale is in Vancouver. I discovered them at the UBC Botanical Garden Apple festival (https://botanicalgarden.ubc.ca/apple-festival-2022-recap/)

Berkeley Bowl used to regularly sell them—not sure if they still do.

I know the site is partly in jest, but I cross-checked against my local bareroot orchard that sells ~75 varieties of Apples and this site had only about 5% of them. I would say it's missing quite a few of the best apples.

Oh! We had Aurora apples in upstate NY recently, they were wonderful. We were in Apple Valley right around Syracuse/Finger lakes region.

Can't seem to find anywhere to order them shipped though.

Apparently, Aurora is a cross between Golden Delicious (33/100 - horse food) and Royal Gala (70/100 - mediocre).

I'm all about that Honeycrisp life but I like to weave in Granny Smith & Fuji, I don't know what this guy is smoking.

A lot of terrible eating apples are great for baking, Granny Smith for example.

Also, red delicious _used_ to be, well, delicious. But selective breeding made them taste terrible: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Delicious

Wonder if the same will happen to other popular varieties, or if apple growers know better now.

> A lot of terrible eating apples are great for baking, Granny Smith for example.

There's no accounting for taste. Grany Smith is my favourite eating apple.

I dunno - honeycrisp is not bad in a pie either. Depends on your preferred consistency at the end game.

Preference for consistency is also very subjective - gala apples while "mediocre" were preferred by my kids as they're "softer" when slightly overripe, better for smaller younger mouths.

Granny Smith falls apart when baked; I prefer something that retains some toothy-ness like a Rome.

I distinctly remember picking red delicious as easily my favorite apple in the 80's. It's unrecognizable now.

This appears to be one person’s subjective nonsense—I personally think SweetTango apples taste cloying artificial, for instance.

I like the website https://www.orangepippin.com/varieties/apples/ambrosia instead.

They gave Honeycrisp 5 stars for sweetness but only gave 2 stars to Fuji. that doesn't make sense to me. Fuji is one of the sweetest tasting apples and Honeycrisp is a mix of sweetness and tartness.

It's a list made by a comedian, I wouldn't take it too seriously, reading the descriptions it's a pretty clear that it's at least partially, if not majoritarly, a joke website

But it says 100% accurate!

Yeah I was really surprised by the low Fuji ranking.

agreed. Fuji is my go-to when it's on sale at Costco.

Honeycrisp are so good and ruined other apples for me. Now I only eat Honeycrisp and its various variants like cosmic crisp, Pazazz, SweeTango and so on.

It's missing my favorite Apple for making juice, the "Cox's Orange Pippin"!


Roald Dahl's favourite apple! Mine too.

Arkansas Black as one of the bad apples?

Is this a joke?

I had one for the first time from our local co-op. It was definitely firmer than any other apple I’ve had but I wouldn’t call it “teeth-shattering” by any means.

Oh, but the flavor. Exquisite. Floral, fragrant. Tasted half like a really good apple, half like a perfectly ripe Bosc pear.

Do yourself a favor and find a ripe Arkansas Black apple. Best apple I ever had.

Just this week I ordered for my orchard of weird little apples:

Almata, Arkansas Black, Hudson’s Golden Gem, Keepsake, Northern Spy, Pipsqueak, Ribston Pippin, Roxbury Russet, St. Edmund’s Russet, Trailman, Wickson

The only one this site had was Arkansas Black, which is very mild right off the tree but sweetens in storage. They hated it. I wonder if they ate it off the tree.

Northern Spy is a fantastic apple. I can't remember what they taste like whole, but they make great cider, and they mature super late so you can have fresh cider right up into winter. Most of our cider producers switch to spy in late autumn and that is when the cider tastes the best.

McIntosh: “ A Seal-Skinned Canadian Letdown.” 45, horse food.

So it’s war then.

No need for war. This list is objective, so it can't apply the standard canadian handicap, as is traditional for most ranking lists.

We demand that our handicap be applied at all times.

I've only once had a good McIntosh. I must have nailed the exact day you want to have one, it was crisp and beautiful. Every other one I have ever had was a mealy let down, even when cold.

I've never had a McIntosh that wasn't grainy and bland. Where do you find good tasting ones?

At an orchard, or in the months of September and October.

McIntosh are very difficult to keep properly, with age they will become mealy and bland. Same with many of its descendants, like Cortland.

If you get to them within two weeks of being picked, they're delicious.

picked right off the tree!

Scrolls to bottom

Red delicious in the bottom 10.


This also reminds me of a side project blog I built years ago where I’d review and rank chips (potato/tortilla/other).

Was a fun creative outlet for a while but life got too busy. I hope to pick it back up some day.

Years ago, my friend and I had a tumblr called Loo York City where we reviewed bar bathrooms in NYC. We had some fun nights drinking at bars and writing up grandiose assessments about life based on where you go pee. The page received no traction whatsoever and we eventually took it down, but I still have local copies of the reviews and reread them more often than I care to admit. The writing is more entertaining and memory-triggering than any free-form journal I ever attempted.

Nowadays, I write beer (and sometimes wine) reviews in a similar matter. I would never post them on untappd or elsewhere because the thought of someone who brewed the beer actually stumbling across something so self-indulgent makes me uneasy, but I have found it to be a fun, low-stakes creative outlet (even if my wife dislikes me writing notes while we're out)

Red Delicious is the sort of apple that a kid finds at their grandparents place, takes one bite and returns it to the fruit bowl.

The flavorless, hard apple you'd find in a school lunch. I remember chucking these into the trash in elementary school in the late 80s and early 90s, where it would land alongside dozens of other "thick-skinned, flavorless, mealy imposters."

Disappointed to see my favourite Apple (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belle_de_Boskoop) missing...

Also Elstar is missing, that would be my everyday goto apple


One reason many European varieties may be missing is because the apple market is pretty regionalized (95% of apples sold in the US are grown in the US), unlike the bananas market, which is hyper-globalized.

Yes, came here to complain about exactly that one! Outrage! :D

Also James Grieve, and Cox's Orange are great.

Personally I stopped touching any supermarket apples, they're all bland. I have a market in front of my house and my parents have trees in the garden, and there's nothing better.

Really speaks to what we're losing as a result of industrialized agriculture. Not saying it's not worth it in order to feed billions, that point can be made, but still...

Great apple for pie! but seldom eat it out of my hand.

To me the source of the apple matters a lot more than the breed itself. Put another way: there is a high variance in the quality of apples independent of the breed.

The absolute best apples I've ever had were pick-ur-own at a well-regarded apple orchard in Connecticut. I believe they are McIntosh although it could also be macoun. Every apple is crisp (not mealy), sweet and tart, with a thin skin and lots of flesh.

The big disappointment for me was moving to california, in an area without pick-your-own. How do I put it? The vast majority of apples in supermarkets here are abysmal. The granny smiths were often mealy and not tart at all! It wasn't until I went to a boutique grocery (Monterey Market in Berkeley) that I finally tasted apples in the same category as the ones I grew up with.

Reading the descriptions on this site, I don't really recognize their descriptions. Mcintosh has a thick skin? Ummmm.

Apples in season at the orchard are not comparable to apples at the local big chain market. The latter are picked green and ripened with ethylene gas when needed.

The varieties of apples best eaten fresh at the orchard differ from the best orchard varieties to save at home, and those are in turn different from the varieties used in general commerce, which are chosen for survival, not taste.

And, pie apples are not eating apples, nor are they cider apples.

The rating listing is laughable.

This is the truth. A Fuji apple in Japan is life-changing. A Fuji apple in Minnesota is flavorless and either hard as a rock or mushy and granular. It’s all about the source.

+1000, Macouns from Rogers Orchards in Southington CT are the BEST apples on the planet

I never thought I would see mention of Rogers Orchards on HN. Some of my family members live within biking distance of there, and I love stopping by for a bag of apples or a pie.

If it has thin skins, it is not macintosh. The thick skin is one of the hallmarks of the cultivar. Macoun are my favorite, though they don't store for long. My favorite storage apple is Empire.

> he vast majority of apples in supermarkets here are abysmal.

And here I thought I just didn't like apples (California resident). Will need to expand my geographic apple boundaries.

This is so true. Thinning, tree health, soil health, all make a huge difference.

Hit Berkeley Bowl or farmers markets which will have much fresher apples.

I shop at Monterey Market more since it is closer to my house. But yes, BB also has quality produce.

Monterey Market is just as good or better than Berkeley Bowl for apples.

(Incidentally Monterey Market has quite a better mushroom aisle than Berkeley Bowl..)

I did a taste test some years ago and Fuji won by a good margin. And this was in the US even -- I've heard they're better in Japan, but I was really pleased with their quality here. BTW, all my testing was with organic apples, if that makes a difference.

I wonder how many fewer clicks the article would have received had the title been “Ranking apples”

> had the title been “Ranking apples”

That gives a totally different meaning though

Well, yes.

You rank Jazz apples a 65? What?

Clearly flawed site is clearly flawed.

"Horse food"?! To arms, my fellow Fuji Apple stans! This heresy is casus belli.

Yeah that's crazy. Not all fuji apples are good, but a good fuji is IMO basically as good as a good honeycrisp, and much cheaper.

Pink Lady or gtfo my face

Honeycrisps are overrated. Too sweet. It's a meme apple at this point. Cosmic Crisps beat them all day long imo.

LOL! Example:


Arkansas Black Apple

This teeth-shattering oddity, boasting a deep red hue that’ll make a dark cherry look like a fluorescent glow stick, will destroy your helpless mouth with every unfortunate bite. A ten out of ten on the Mohs Hardness Scale, this apple would perform admirably as a drill tip in a diamond mine. While true the hardness marginally decreases if left in your refrigerator for a full year, those patient enough to plan lunch into the next decade will be sorely disappointed with a thick-skinned carbuncle that tastes and feels like an uncooked russet potato. Truly despicable.

I used to be a fan, but these days I feel like there is little to no innovation in the top ranked apples anymore. Not to mention, does SweeTango even have USB-C?!

My favorite description of a Red Delicious apple was from Mitsuwa (japanese grocery store in the US): "Looks nice, flavorless. Ok in salads"

Growing up, I really liked Winesaps from a local orchard, but those were rated "Horse Food" on this list. To each their own, I guess.

a system that ranks Jazz apples as mediocre is obviously flawed

I'm surprised Ambrosia scored so poorly. Ambrosia was a taste explosion and remains a fond memory even now years later. Perhaps it has a narrow optimal for eating period.

Honey Crisp is similar and generally my consolation buy as it's far more common to find.

Agree, ambrosia is my #1. The fact that it is 55 and the mealier, less tart, less sweet Gala apples are 70 tells me we have very different tastes. It is closer to a Honeycrisp, which they have as 91 and I grab when Ambrosias are unavailable.

I immediately went to look up the Cosmic Crisp, which was a research endeavor from Washington State University. It is an excellent apple for eating. I'm at a loss to understand these rankings, as the reviewer claims that the Cosmic Crisp has a thin skin and less-than-average flavor. This is completely the opposite of my experience - the Cosmic blows away every other eating apple on the market, including the Gala. It stays crisp, has a firm but not chewy skin (I'm looking at you, Red Delicious, or whatever they heck they did to you), and while not over-the-top sugary it is certainly a sweet treat. #GoCougs.

Where do you live? The Cosmic Crisps that make it here to New York (almost certainly out of season), end up having not much flavor. They're still edible though (waaaaaay better than garbage like red delicious), one great thing about the Cosmic Crisp is that they actually store well.

Eastern Washington - so it’s very local crop. As you well know, you have lots of Apple production in New York and if I were there, I’d presumably look for local varieties too. Good to know they don’t ship well, appreciate the insight

Yeah, when they're fresh I basically get whatever I can here. In the late winter / spring though, well, it's whatever stores best :-)

"Long Island's Sand-Filled Condom"

(Newtown Pippin Apple Review)


Are all those varieties reasonably common in the US? A good percentage I've never heard of, though as it happens Pink Lady is the one in the top category I see regularly in markets here (Aus), and indeed my preferred choice for eating fresh (which the rankings seem very biased toward - some apples are pretty ordinary fresh but great when cooked). Kanzi and Envy are moderately common too but I've never been blown away by them. I've also had multiple people tell me "Cox's orange pippins" (or just Cox apples) are supposedly the king of apple varieties but not listed here.

I'm in EU and from the top 10 I've only seen Pink Lady in regular shops (meaning I didn't go out of my way to search for apples).

McIntosh are my favorite and in the shit category. So, you peel it, no big deal.

Honestly, I don't think I can trust anything else on the site because of this review, unless it's completely meant to be some sort of joke...

I didn't know Snapdragon was a kind of apple! Did Qualcomm name their SoC Snapdragon hoping to sell it to Apple? :D

It's a new-ish Cornell cultivar that they are only licensing to growers within New York state. Probably the best commercial apple on the market today.

One aspect that comes into play is shelf life / freshness of the apple. I normally find Golden Delicious apples to be completely devoid of taste. But they keep a long time so chances are the ones I come across are months old.

I was at an apple orchard a few years ago and encountered an awesome apple, enquired as to what was planted on that row and it was Golden Delicious. I triple-checked because it was a completely different taste than I expected.

It would seem that taste doesn't keep once the apple is picked and it becomes bland over time.

Disappointing site - it doesn't even mention the two main categories of apple breeds. Apples were traditionally bred either for cooking or for dessert. There should be a selector and separate ratings for intended use.

With the advent of the shipping container, of course, they are now bred primarily for toughness (low bruising), visual appeal, tolerance of long storage without losing visual appeal, and a short picking season. Taste and texture are minor attributes. Visual appeal means a waxy tough skin and size, mainly. The Granny Smith and Red Delicious being the archetypes.

When I was growing up, in autumn we used to get (by rail, from the grower, 200 miles away) a case of Cox's Orange Pippin[1] for eating, and another two of another apple the name of which I can't remember for cooking. The Envy, Smitten, and Sweetango come closest to the Cox's Orange as I remember it, although that had a hint of a winy taste to it.

If you have room for an apple tree or two, there are many heirloom varieties out there that were bred for taste and texture, not for shipping, storage, and display.

ETA: The ratings are pure opinion, based on what is available at the author's location, the author's preferences, and undefined attributes. What does "skin" mean as a quantitative measure? And why is "branding" a factor at all?

1. https://www.epicgardening.com/heirloom-apples/

Others mention how pies call for different apples. In the same vein, my father's cousin, a farmer and now sadly no longer with us, had a strong opinion about apples that were best for applesauce. Sadly, I don't remember which variety. He lived in rural Ontario, Canada, and knew the only farm in the area that grew that variety, so that's where we'd go to buy apples when it was time to make applesauce.

I like Ruby Red apples for applesauce because there's no work involved. They come out of the skin as a sloppy puree.

Yeah, I wish there was an index organized by "baking", "eating", "sauce".

About 20 years ago I was visiting a friend in south eastern Indian. While buying groceries at a local chain there was a chatty old lady in the apple section who exclaimed that some breed of apple was available and that you didn't see them often any more and they made the best apple sauce.

Intrigued I bought some even though I had no plan to make apple sauce and threw them in a pot like she instructed, they turned into a perfectly sweet and flavorful sauce with no intervention at all.

It was almost a shame to add cinnamon they were so good.

I tried an uncooked slice and it was the mealiest garbage I've ever tried but as a sauce it was the platonic ideal of an applesauce. I wish I could remember the variety.

Braeburn has a lower rank than Pink Lady? This ranking system is broken.

politely but firmly (with all my soul) disagree.

It's the level of sweetness and crispness I'm troubled with most of the time. Braeburns are crispier and are better balanced at sweetness (neiter sour nor too sweet) IMO.

Wrong, granny smith is number one.

For baking an apple pie, not for eating directly.

Wrong, #1 in all categories.

Amazing site, but I have to disagree on a couple of them! In my area, orchards have excellent Jonathan and Winesap apples--I would never rank them that low! And I haven't tried aging Arkansas Black apples yet, but I have heard it's worth doing if you have the storage.

Totally agree on Pink Lady, just a wonderful apple all around.

Yeah, I grew up a few miles from a big orchard that had amazing Jonathon apples every Fall... I still miss them. Best. Apples. Ever.

Johnagolds are one of my all time favorites, but relegated to the site's dustbin.

They are severely underrating cosmic crisp imo. It’s got all the flavor of the best honey crisp you’ve ever had with an unbelievably slow browning rate. You can cut one up and leave it out for hours and it’s still not brown.

My only beef with them is that they are too big. One cosmic is practically 2 meals.

I have to agree that Cosmic Crisp was unfairly ranked here. I did a blind tasting of ten apple varietals with 14 friends and Cosmic Crisp was the winner. Now there are factors (the perfectly unbrowned flesh and small bites) that may have given it a slightly unfair advantage. But middle of the pack seems far too low.

I was excited for the Cosmic Crisp to broadly hit the market. I have been a Honey Crisp fan for a long time, but was looking forward to seeing if the CC could beat it.

Turned out, I just don't like the CC at all. It's too sweet? And the sweetness is syrupy almost. And I miss the tartness of the HC, I guess.

Cool looking apple, with all the stars on it and all, but I actually think the ranking places it just right. e.g. in "The Most Overhyped Apple of All Time" category.

Perfect for sharing :)

The ratings aren't serious, but I like the idea of having a "go to" site that simply provides a rating, brief description, and that's it.

It would be great to have something like this for movies, since IMDB and RT are not serious ratings (MetaCritic is a bit closer, I suppose).

boy, this is painful to read regarding red delicious.

"Nowadays, you can find this thick-skinned, flavorless, mealy imposter unwashed in a dirty wicker basket on the floor of a convenience store. What a sad state of affairs. It’s time to hang them up old man, your time has passed."

I cried laughing so hard. Other descriptions can't help but comment on it as well, such as "belligerently disgusting" in the Honeycrisp description.

I don't know what this guy is talking about. He lists Arkansas Black as a terrible apple; man has no taste! AB's one of the best apples I've ever had.

And he doesn't even mention the Gravenstein apple, which made Sebastopol, CA famous?!

There is a local business in Oxford, run by a retired railway engineer and countertenor, called Tiddly Pommes. They (well, he) produces hyper-local apple juice, often from a single tree or small collection of trees in someone's garden, harvested by hand, pressed, and pasteurised. It's amazingly, amazingly delicious. I really didn't expect it to be quite as delicious as it is; all store bought juice is somehow forever disappointing in comparison. He runs grading systems and seeks out more obscure varieties from old Victorian trees, many of which might be sourer but somehow crisp and refreshingly delicious juiced.

Oh man, I liked a Cameo apple so much the other year that I kept the seeds to grow something at least remotely similar. Right now the tree is standing a good 8ft tall, and I expect it to yield some fruit next fall. Only time will tell if it's only a 50/100 apple, or a great one like I remember.

Actually, looking at the comments (https://applerankings.com/cameo-apple-review/), I'm not the only one who thinks they're a great pick.

FYI, apples don't grow true from seed. The apples you get (if any) from your tree will likely be nothing at all like the apple they came from.

All is not lost, however!

The apple tree in question can be grafted with a branch of Cameo, or several.

Yes, I'm aware, and I'm not expecting much, but I'm really curious. I'll probably graft a couple varieties this coming spring, just to be sure I get something viable, plus it's fun to have a salad tree.

The problem with the popular apple breeds is they are too sweet. Actually, sweetness is what makes them popular. I couldn't find fresh and not too sweet apple breeds in grocery stores in Canada.

Perfect ranking is possible. Also, Kanzi apples are indeed the best kind.

Yeah, these rankings are bogus. Snapdragon is far superior to Honeycrisp.

I could argue that most farmers/food-distributors choose Most of the Apple varieties for their ability to stay freshest in a root cellar the longest (which was the primary source of food storage before refrigeration was invented).

We bought a 1870s farmhouse and found some really good Red Delicious left buried about 2 feet deep in the year round 56-degree bacteria-less soil in the basement after the 13 years of ownership. Quite crispy but mealy too, surprisingly.

I entered II and ][, got an error. Then I realized it was for fruit.

Too bad they don’t have Topaz. It would obviously rank at the top.

It is my favorite apple. Tart but also sweet.

I don't know why this one is missing, yet there are dozens of varieties I've never heard of.

This is weird site run by someone who clearly isn't an apple fan. My personal favourite apple, the Cortland, is rated "24 Despicable" because:

> "The general public usually doesn’t have access to an apple fresh off the tree in a cold orchard. My rankings must reflect what is available to regular folks."

In Ontario, this apple is only available for a few weeks in the fall because it ages and travels poorly. At least they have the proper opinion about the Granny Smith ...

As someone from Québec, I share your surprise. The general public absolutely has access to this apple, either from picking at the orchard directly (very popular social event) or from the local growers that sell at the grocery store.

In Ontario, you can get it at Loblaws or Sobeys for a brief time every fall.

An entire thread about apple rankings and no mention of Adam’s apples?


Hard disagree about cosmic crisps. IMHO they panned out as good as advertised and I like them more than honeycrisps.

Otherwise I love this and makes me really want to try a SweeTango!!

You have obviously never tasted a fresh, Japanese grown Fuji apple. They are perfectly crunchy, and some of them are so sweet that the core is clear. Once you have tasted one, there is no comparison (not even your favored Honey Crisp).

Apple rankings are much less about varieties and much more about freshness/locality. If you do not live in an apple growing (and distributing) state, these rankings might make sense. But as someone who can get orchard fresh apples in Virginia, the lowest-ranked variety of Virginia apple in season will beat the highest-ranked Washington/Oregon apple hands down.

For fresh fruit, there is nothing better than shopping local.

As someone who enjoys eating a lemon, so sourness is no issue, Granny Smiths are pretty good IMO. I always got a sense they were harder to digest after eating them, it does feel like roughage ... and the site agrees by saying they are the hardest to digest apple, but good for gut flora as a result.

Also I like the mild clickbait. By making apple the first word, I assumed they meant Apple Inc.

Without going into the contents of the article, I was surprised to learn recently the number of varieties of apple available. Then I learned apple sweetness and tartness rankings is a thing. I don’t understand why so many exist and need to exist. Why didn’t the whole market just coalesce on a few(2/3) varieties? Do people actively seek a specific variety and all these are in vogue?

The comments column table will help:


There used to be more than the current 7500 cultivars. Many went extinct. There are groups that scour abandoned homesteads looking for surviving trees of lost varieties.

One reason there are so many is that apple trees are readily planted, but each new tree produces a completely different variety of fruit. Rule of thumb is that 1% of trees produce something edible, 0.1% something good, and 0.01% something commercializable.

For this reason, almost all apples you eat come from clones. (As they have been for 100's-1000's of years.)

? Thats the way it was just a few decades ago. Red delicious, and Granny smith.

Now we have more choices, which is good because apples are a species that produce offspring that is frequently quite different than the parents. Meaning every single one of those supermarket apples is the product of a long dead tree being propagated.

It’s doubly strange when you realize there’s basically a single species of banana that we all eat.

Fairly sure all cultivars are the same species. And I dunno about you but I regular see Lady Fingers and Plantains and not occasionally Red bananas at markets here along with the ubiquitous Cavendish, so they obviously are eaten (I've had cooked Plantain in south American dishes a fair bit, but not recently). But it's probably true that most fruits are more heavily dominated by a single cultivar than apples, and there's rarely more than 2 or 3 alternatives readily available. Esp. berries - can't think of when I saw multiple options for blueberries or blackberries and even for strawberries it's rare to have much choice.

I wish the website would recommend similar apples to ones I know about. One of you clowns surely knows ML or something, help this guy out!

These are all mass-market cultivars. Get serious!

Does Granny Smith redeem itself when baked? We have an apple tree we vaguely name as cooking apples, and it’s nearly finished for the season. Stewed apple may be better than the top of this ranking. Are there many podcasts that talk about this? There was one that liked the cosmic crisp, but moved onto baseball and Icy Hot without trying other variants.

When my wife makes apple pie, she alternates Granny Smith slices with slices of a sweeter apple (I don't remember which.) It works well for my taste.

As someone who has 20 off apple trees, while these ratings are fine. There are some reasons to have apples not listed. For instance, I have Arkansas Black apple trees. They are hardier than trees like honey crisp and their apples last 6 months in a chilled environment. Compare that with honey crisp and you’re only talking a handful of weeks.

It's not on the list, but if you haven't had Ananas Reinette apples you're in for a treat. Look for them!

Totally disagree with SugarBee being so low. My understanding is that it was engineered to be an improved version of Honeycrisp. My wife and I did a head-to-head comparison of SugarBee and Honeycrisp, and the SugarBee won no contest. We got our apples from Sigona’s; maybe the list creator got a bad batch somewhere?

So you are essentially saying it was not an apples to apples comparison?

Pink Lady not being ranked higher is a crime.

Though, there should be different rankings for what use the Apple is being put to. You want different varieties depending if you are using it to make applesauce, eating it plain, making a pie, etc.

Except for red delicious. It is the absolute worst and has no uses. Such a mealy Apple.

I would like to try all the apples worse than Red Delicious. I find it a bit hard to imagine something worse.

what about for baking (and other uses)?

baking an apple pie the apples need different characteristics than apples that taste sweet when you eat them.

Also, I was at a farmer's market and they had other characteristics like "baking, snacking, salads, freezes well" and more I can't remember.


Low rated Cripps Pink and high rated Pink Lady? Isn’t it the same cultivar, just Pink Lady is trademarked?

I don't get why people like honeycrisp so much. It's like a sweet, appley, cardboard.

I thought that were something wrong with me because the ranking is reversed compared with my taste but it seems that most people here are angry too. Well, I'll keep my Fuji apples then.

Kanzi in top three. So well deserved! I new saw one of those crisps I german supermarkets yet.

I had to check: https://applerankings.com/red-delicious-apple-review/

i have no clue why anyone would buy a red delicious apple. Their review is pretty funny.

It's easily one of my favorite apples. I love them!

The mealier, the better.

Maybe I'm just weird.

You are just weird. Red “Delicious” is an abomination that never should have blemished this planet. ;-)

Autumn Glory apples are the absolute best apples I've ever had. I love it so much more than other apples, but I can't find them anywhere this year! The fact that this site ranks them so low means I can't trust any rankings from it.

Yeah, I immediately searched for Autumn Glory in their list and was shocked. I had them only once (I haven't seen them since) and they were the best apples I've ever tasted.

3 observations:

1) Granny Smith apples are quite nice.

2) Generally you should be suspicious of "good" fruits as these are the varieties that have been the most intensively bred/engineered and grown.

3) This list is so incomplete- where are all the Scandinavian apples?!?

Per other commenters, Granny Smith gets downranked for being a mediocre apple for eating plain in-hand, but it's great for using in salads. We have a Granny Smith apple tree and we dry all the apples in a dehydrator and it makes the best apple chips.

Granny Smiths are also good for baking in general. They have a twang to them that offsets some of the sweet, as well as being a crunchy apple that doesn't turn to mush during the cook.

Is this an American thing to know types of apples from top of your head? I'm from EU and apples are just apples, of course we have multiple types of apples at store, some are better than others, but really can't remember their names.

Doesn't have my go to, the Eve apple, I guess it's a US centric list?


There are 7,500 cultivars of apples. This list doesn't cover most of the varieties in my tiny town in upstate NY. We had a good year for Macoun for example. Many apples get a bad rep just because they don't ship well, which is bullshit.

Where's Elstar? Or Gravenstein? Both are excellent apples in both flavor and texture.

Cultivars are highly regional.

About half of the apples on this list are ones I recognize as being generally available in the US, depending on the time of year, but I'm not sure how the others were chosen.

I once had access (local grocer) to apples that were green on the outside and red fleshed on the inside. I forget the name and haven't seen them in years. Wish I could find them again as they were perfect for this time of year.

If you're in New England, you can find the orchards that grow your desired apple at https://newenglandapples.org/apples/

Less trash talking but more varieties https://www.orangepippin.com/

Also, America is missing out on Cox’s Orange Pippins. I miss them so much.

Gosh I'm already eating Honeycrisp apples and they're just like, pretty good I guess. Doesn't look like there's a lot of headroom. Maybe I just like the idea of apples more than apples themselves.

Opal Apple Review - "A Tasty Unwiped Anus" https://applerankings.com/opal-apple-review/

Before clicking on the link, I thought Apple launched a web search service.

Rankings based on what ? Personal taste? And it's not like every batch of apple is going to be the exact same from one week to another... You need to be a lot more specific than that.

No Cox?

Came for that. The list is severely lacking.

Are they trying to measure cooking apples by the eating apple metric? Because they dunked on some cooking apples that would be a million times better in a pie than any of the highest rated ones.

It was my understanding from lockdown that the UK had millions of apples frozen, and would essentially just cycle through - in other words every apple came from farm to freezer to shop.

I may have misunderstood

I'm impressed by the level of detail put into this project. There is a lot of information here, and his writing is hilarious. I guess he's really passionate about apples!

Miss apple orchards like this one with fresh cider.


If you like this, I recommend a much more comprehensive apple review site:


Do yourself a favor and read the Newtown Pippin Apples' review.

Honey Crisps are just too sweet for me, so this list doesn't work for me. Next version: personal recommendations. If you like X, then these apples are better on these axes!

Opal being snubbed is a clear sign this person lacks good judgement

I can tell that the person doing the rankings doesn't try to bake with these apples, or do anything but eat them out of hand; this is basically Hot or Not but for apples.

They said they consider factors such as use in baking as secondary:

"After the initial one hundred point evaluation is calculated several additional factors are considered which may add or subtract points. These include: Lineage, History, Sustainability, Uniqueness, Longevity, and Alternative Uses (cider, applesauce, baking)."

It’s not the site we wanted but the one we needed but never knew.

Opal apples are at the top of the list when fresh: sweet, tangy, intense apple flavor, crisp, and reminiscent of trips to the apple orchard growing up in northeast Ohio.

Ambrosia Apples are top tier. Cant take this list seriously.

I long for the days when the internet was filled with sites like these. Every hour spent tying up our only home phone line on my 14.4 was an hour well spent.

I'm shocked there is something worse than red delicious.

Funny snarky descriptions, but asssuming you buy the ratings on this site, how do you list the apples by rating? I'm actually curious what he does like!

If you click the "pick an apple" button (instead of selecting from the drop-down), you get the whole index: https://applerankings.com/pick-an-apple/

Staggering varieties of Apples some of which are delightful. Wish there was some sort of clearly labelled Apple sample pack.

Also, not a single green or yellow apple over 80.

I was a big Honeycrisp fan for a long time, but they have gotten too sweet for me now. They also seem to grow them the size of grapefruits these days.

So sad that it's missing so many niche varieties and their translation... Am I to assume it's always the case with American authors?

Awesome link! Though I think the reviewer has a bias against crunch and skin flavor. (I don't understand how the Smitten ranks so low.)

There's not a lot that's better than a red delicious apple with some good peanut butter. All these sweet apples be damned.

I am a fan of the Pink Lady. It is a real treat if you cut them into slices add a smear of Peanut Butter and a squeeze of Sriracha.

My favourite too, a really great apple, but only eaten plain for me.

I beleive this is very US-centric. Living in Europe I never heard of most varieties from top-10.

By the way, are description there GPT-generated?

Went apple picking a few weeks ago. It was end of season but they had one I never tasted called Eden. Wow. My new favorite.

This is good. We need one for mangoes as well.

(Gender joke about travel here.)

Unripened ones contain urushiol just as raw cashew nuts, raw pistachios, and poison oak do. I can't believe health and wellness sites seriously suggest eating raw, unripe mangoes.

I wish this listed which countries each can be bought in. Anyone know which of the best ones are available in the UK?

I just can't trust any Apple Authority which claims that there exist apples worse than the dreaded Golden Delicious.

I am just glad this has nothing to do with Apple inc. I clicked thinking it would be some sort of app store thing.

Long live honeycrisp!


Makes me suspicious of the author. A fresh macoun will make you question everything you know about apples.

Missing my favorite apple, Ginger Gold :(

Came to say the same ... Bought a bag today around noon and they are half gone!

You are lucky. Where I am (Northern NJ) Ginger Gold's been gone out of stores for a few weeks now. Highly seasonal :(

Central PA .... Shouldn't be too different from your seasons.

Go read the worst ranked apples it is absolutely worth it. I've waken up my wife laughing out loud...

This is simply fantastic - learned plenty of stuff about apples while genuinely laughing until my face hurt.

What's wrong with granny smith?????

Apparently Opal Apples taste like an unwiped anus… Never seen one to have tried myself - can anyone confirm?

if you love apple varieties this account showcases some of the more unusual ones: https://www.instagram.com/pomme_queen/

> the most overhyped apple of all time

Good to see they've got Cosmic Crisp properly described.

Am I the only one that thought it was a ranking on different Apple Inc.products?

I miss Ingrid Marie, this list strikes me as a summary of common industry varieties.

Missing my favorite, Northern Spy

Ranking apples seems ridiculous as it would be to rank wines and just promotes monocultures where we should strive to have the widest range of heritage apples with their unique tastes. Reduction to a few global breeds just leads us to a situation as with bananas where a single fungus can threaten the global banana supply.

h5 subheader “The definitive list of good and bad apples” is overlayed by the title on large screens

Check Elementor's page builder responsiveness


I really like Fuji, but it's very hard to come by in UK for an unknown reason.

Personally I am a fan of Tolman Sweet apples, but they are rather hard to come by.

Cosmic Crisp is not overhyped. I think it’s noticeably better than Honey Crisp :\

Honeycrisp are my ever favorite and the site agrees. Their rank it as a superb

I can't be the only that thought this would be Apple products' rankings

"BEST USES: Compost"

couldn't agree more for red delicious. tastes like styrofoam.

Absolutely offended by the ranking of my go to apple the humble Granny Smith

100% disagree with these rankings.

But then, all the top ones he selected are reds, so yeah...

Man, this guy had a lot of cheeky fun writing the titles and descriptions!

Personally I only like sour apples so this list is totally wrong for me.

As a non American, first time, I am seeing that Apples have brands.

Anyone who puts Pink Lady at 80 deserves no audience at all. Blasphemy.

Laughed at Fuji being "horse food". That's my favorite.

This list is garbage. Honey crisps are mediocre while Fujis are great.

Cosmic crisp apples are the only apples I'll ever eat

Sadly, in my experience, the apple variety alone doesn't actually have that much bearing on quality (although a red delicious will always be lacking in the second of it's nominative attributes!).

What I've found is a much better predictor of a good apple is freshness. An appple straight off the tree is going to be excellent, but a local apple in season will be just as good. Find out what the apple seasons are in your location, and just buy the fruit that's fresh.

I've never had much luck buying imported apples from New Zealand or anywhere in the southern hemisphere, and varieties suitable for long storage may look good but won't taste it once they come out of the storage bin. So I now only buy apples for about 7 months of the year, when they're actually good. There are lots of other fruit for the rest of the year, and it's such a treat when they come back in season again.

Not a fan of HoneyCrisp. HC are too acidic. Tangos are pretty good.

What a bunch of marketing voodoo.

The best apple is the cheapest one. Best is free.

De gustibus non est disputandum... also no Idared and Jonaprince

Red Delicious hate is is one of the corniest high-status opinions I see currently in rotation.

Red Delicious apples are regarded as some of the best apples on the planet by most people, the SV and NYC types hate on them because poor people like them.

Wow, they like Pink Ladies better than Cosmic Crisp? Bizarre.

Granny Smith, Red Delicious are both, rightly, trashed. Good.

What, no Russets?! And Pink Lady are all sugar and no flavour.

Are there Russet apples? I associate the term with potatoes.

TIL: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russet_apple

I tried them [Russets] once years ago and was blown away, haven't seen them since but I've been looking.

They're pretty common in the SE of England, where I live.

I absolutely needed this today. Marking it as a favourite!

What, no Bravo? Needs the ability to submit guest reviews.

Cosmic crisp is the only apple I'll ever eat

How many klicked thinking it was something related to apple

Everyone? It is about apple(s)

I'm about to hulk out and fight over granny Smith

was I the only one who thought until I scrolled down that this was an independent ranking of Apple iOS apps?

I kinda like the Newtown Pippin Apple.

Really missed an opportunity not naming this site "How do you like them apples?"

Surprised this domain was available

Honey crisp massively overrated.

Hah, “You’ve been eating trash”

Honeycrisp as #2? Nahhhh …

God bless the internet!

I'll save everyone some time.


Absolutely appalled there are apples below Red Delicious on this list.

No Macoun, tragic.

horse food wtf I'm offended

Pink Lady's are great

reminds me a little bit of snackdata.com

Everyone who is taking this too seriously and disagreeing with the rankings is missing the fact that this is some absolutely hilarious comedy.

Look at the review for the arkansas black apple, it's hilarious.

> This teeth-shattering oddity, boasting a deep red hue that’ll make a dark cherry look like a fluorescent glow stick, will destroy your helpless mouth with every unfortunate bite. A ten out of ten on the Mohs Hardness Scale, this apple would perform admirably as a drill tip in a diamond mine. While true the hardness marginally decreases if left in your refrigerator for a full year, those patient enough to plan lunch into the next decade will be sorely disappointed with a thick-skinned carbuncle that tastes and feels like an uncooked russet potato. Truly despicable.

Even just the subtitles. At the very bottom, the only apple to land in "Apple Hell"

Newton Pippin Apples "Long Island's Sand Filled Condom"

I didn't pick that one because I didn't want to have a comment on HN with "Long Island's Sand Filled Condom" :D

It's hilarious.

This is very US-Centric.

Poland is the 3rd most apple producing country in the world (behind US and China) [1]. It has probably the highest apple per capita count and I cannot even find basic varieties that Poland offers in this search engine - Ligol, Antonówka (Antonovka) [2][3].

[1]: https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/top-apple-producing-coun...

[2]: https://pl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ligol

[3]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antonovka

They don't have most of the varieties we grew in our apple orchard growing up in the NE US. It's a very limited selection.

US is the default on the internet. So unless explicitly mentioned I tend to assume content is geared to a US audience.

But I did not know Poland was big in apples. Interesting. I noticed the strong regional variances in Apple availability ever since moving to Canada. I have had a very hard time finding an apple that works well for baking, as Boskoop Apples aren't a thing here.

China and India have more internet users than the US.

Unless you specify, I might assume you're Asian.

(most probably they'd speak English too. I'm gonna say because I think you'd be concerned)

ARPANET was developed by neither China nor India.


The country of origin doesn't determine the quantity of people using it.

I was defending the right of the US to be "the default on the internet" as stated here: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=33640903

"First!" usually trumps quantity.

What does that have to do with anything?

I was defending the right of the US to be "the default on the internet" as stated here: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=33640903

Paper was invented in China

Neat to know!

Exactly my point.

I think you meant "<My country> is the default on the internet. So unless explicitly mentioned I tend to assume content is geared to a US audience." Because you are American and you tend to visit US-centric sites. No shit.

I am pretty sure 90% of sites visited by Chinese citizens to be hosted in, and tailored towards China.

Also it's not just the Internet being US centric. It's American people being US centric in general, and thus on the Internet make it seem like only US exists. It's more cultural than you think it is.

The US has a larger population than the entirety of western Europe and it's easily the largest western country. I'm not from the US and I'd still consider it the default by sheer size.

There is more to the world and the Internet than US and western Europe.


I agree with your assessment. I am not US American though. I live in America (Canada specifically) but I was born and raised in Europe. I'm afraid the cynicism in my original comment requires this context to be received.

In my opinion it seems to reflect an expectation in culture in general. Most movies filmed in Canada do not actually depict Canada. I lived in Toronto for a while where there are almost as many NYPD cruisers as there are TPS cruisers and as many Yellow Cabs as there are Beck Taxis. International YouTubers translating things into Imperial Units and US Dollars in videos is another often seen accommodation to this.

I think my simplest heuristic for agreeing with your point is how much content there is in the English Wikipedia vs. other languages. I haven't run the numbers, but I'm sure it's also much more US centric (take a look at the # of articles on the US government (current and historical) vs., say, the Brazilian government...)

America just tends to be particularly prolific in producing online content. No, I'm not claiming this as a statistical fact, but I am claiming that's the impression day in an day out so might as well assume as much...

(Dis)claimer: I'm not American

Wow that got really xenophobic really quick. No need to be so hostile.

Where is the xenophobia? Come on, not every single minor comment you don't agree with is xenophobia.

You might disagree and think I'm wrong. Fine. But there's no need to cry wolf because I said US culture is quite insular. Geez.

They've ranked Granny Smith as "Not worth eating" so right off the bat I can tell you the rating system is junk.

It loses the most points on its "density." Can't say I've ever eaten a granny smith and thought "I enjoy this taste, but I sure wish I could change the density."

It's just like any kind of snobbery. If you want to be a connoisseur, it's practically obligatory to detest all the popular options. Because you (i.e. this website) are the expert and the commoners must be tasteless and wrong!

What do you mean, the most popular options are at the top. Honeycrisp, Envy, and Pink Lady are "the good apples you can find at major grocery stores."

I love the sourness and the texture. Too many popular apples are just "mealy" texture. I've tried some of the other tart or sour apples and they are just not as good.

I sure do love me some Granny Smith apples, but probably because I grew up with them.

Taste is subjective. Any ranking system for taste is just popularity with extra steps.

Matters of taste are subjective, but subjective does not mean "all in your mind." There is such a thing as good music, good conversation, etc. There are no objective tests, but that's not the same as non existent.

Good tastes exists. OP just has bad taste (in apples).

> OP just has bad taste (in apples).

For someone who understands subjectivity, this is an awfully objective statement :)

I think this attempts to rank apples based on how people would rank them on average. I think it's good for that. Not a lot of people like Granny Smith apples. Maybe I would not say it is not worth eating, but I wouldn't suggest it unless you wanted something different?

They have Fuji below Gala. I'm surprised you made it that far.

I was waiting to see this comment. These two are very popular in US markets but are world's apart in the opposite direction. Gala are straight mush. TBF they do caveat: "You MUST buy Gala’s that are grown where it is currently Autumn... for an off-season Gala may be nothing more than a six-month old, previously frozen, grain silo in a fruit jacket." Which is 75% of the time...

Funny enough I vastly prefer Gala to Fuji.

And my girlfriend swears by Macintosh apples.

Agreed. Taste is very personal, and to me Granny Smith are still my all time favorite apple. Most other apples are too sweet for me.

Granny Smith is a trash tier Apple. The skin is inedible and it is absurdly sour. It's only edible if you peel the skin, cut it up, ...and bake it in something else. Alternatively peel the skin, and dip it into something such as peanut butter. By itself, it's trash tier.

I don't like them by themselves, but I love them with other food. For example, with a nice nutty cheese and maybe some fig jam. The sourness can be perfect with a sweet counterpart.

I like my apples sour. But then my favorite fruit is lemon so I might be unusual.

Finally! An objective ranking of apples. I for one am fed up with apples-to-oranges comparisons.

He ranks McIntosh poorly (the mind boggles, though I will admit that sometimes the skin can be a little tough) while ranking some of the most vile, cloying varieties rather highly. A palette spoiled by high fructose corn syrup? That would be one charitable guess for some of these rankings. Also, different apples have different culinary uses.

I am also sad to see the limited number of cultivars. The world doesn't begin and end with North America. Have a Papirovka/White Transparent or an Antonovka some time.

Yup, clicked and saw Honeycrisp at number 2 and no Boskoop or Reine de reinette... A good apple should have some sourness to counterbalance the sweetness.

This blatant Fuji disrespect has not gone unnoticed. Honeycrisp is ranked second and Fuji is down at the bottom despite HC being a slightly crispier but way more expensive Fuji?!

How DARE you.

Indeed! I blame the popularity of HC's on folks applying the same super-saturated attention spans they derived from spending too much time on Instagram to food preferences. Fuji's are yummy - HC's are over-sweet parodies of a proper apples.

Hrmph! : )

Though it's fun to read his reviews even where they're wrong, so there's that.

Fuji rated far below Granny Smith? Horse food?? O H P L E A S E

Granny Smith is severely underrated here. This site is like hipster-tier ratings of vinyl with a bunch of obscure stuff nobody ever heard of to try and appear more sophisticated.

I wanted to say the same thing: the Granny Smith slander is uncalled for.

You don't understand Nevermind wasn't actually all that good Bandwagonesque BY Teenage Fanclub was actually better and more instrumental into turning the early 90s into an audio experience.

The Newtown Pippin:

> This sand-filled condom from Long Island was choked down in the 1750s by the likes of Thomas Jefferson at Monticello, George Washington at Mount Vernon, and Benjamin Franklin as he declared it his favorite apple. Perhaps the Newtown Pippin was once a great apple whose quality has degraded over the centuries like the crumbling democracy the Founding Fathers established. Or perhaps, after decades of eating pigeon pie and squirrel meat, these wooden-toothed slave owners’ tastebuds are not to be trusted. Either way, in today’s world, aside from being excellent for apple cider production, the Newtown Pippin is a tasteless hunk of malformed donkey shit that should’ve been abolished during the reign of King George III

The annoying thing about this website is I can't find anywhere that lists the apples by rank, in any of their 12 categories. A ranking website should, y'know, rank things.

This is a comedy website that uses rankings as a method for delivering jokes. Hope this helps.

Scroll down, it's hidden below the fullpage background image for a single search box

If you click on the "Pick an Apple" menu tab it shows the list of apples by rank, https://applerankings.com/pick-an-apple/

No, it just shows them in alphabetical order.

Clicking on the "Pick an Apple" drop down in the menu bar takes you to the rankings page.

Ah... the internet is still alive in bits and pieces! I know where I will be spending some time this weekend.

PS: I hate the internet being monetization of cattle vs discovery of wild and unclassified species in the woods.

Finally a fully objective ranking of apples that is completely correct and anyone that disagrees is provably wrong, a fact in no way based on my personal feelings agreeing with the rankings within.

"The definitive list of good and bad apples."

Definitive, eh? Qualifiers like this are amusing, as they're generally self-proclaimed.

However, having a domain like applerankings.com, as well as a comprehensive, in-depth and entertaining library of apple reviews, definitely helps make the case.

What other heuristics have you seen out there that help make a self-proclaimed "definitive source" become an indisputable one?

Edit: looks like the site came online last year with that same claim, so time is not in their corner.

Yawn, more of this silly apple snobbery. Yes, honey crisp is a good apple, but red delicious is also fine. The difference in taste between table/dessert apples is mostly personal preference. Get over yourselves, you are not better than the many people who prefer red delicious, and your palette is not more refined. I've met apple farmers who rather like red delicious, surely it's not because the poor wretches just don't have access to the other kinds, or know nothing about apples.

> but red delicious is also fine

I was prepared to agree with you on pretty much any apple except red delicious. They are absolutely disgusting and leave no room for preference or taste. They're flavorless and mealy. I wouldn't give one to my worst enemy.

>more of this silly apple snobbery

Eh, different people like different tastes, sure. I wouldn't judge someone for liking the taste of a Red Delicious. But there are some practically universally disdained qualities, like mealiness. And Red Delicious is definitely one of the worst offenders in that regards, making it an (almost) objectively bad cultivar.

Fine, sure. How bad does something have to taste for it to stop being snobbery? Is there any time you can criticize any food? Taste is subjective at the margins but Red Delicious are famously reviled, and for good reason. Whatever measure you pick for "aspects of foods that humans like" they will fail.

You're allowed to be that one person that them, I like things that nobody else likes too but I'm not stupid enough to serve them to others.

>Is there any time you can criticize any food?

perhaps not during a global food crisis, from a first-world (obese) nation, which is seeing some fruits and vegetables tripling in price

This is the “you should finish your plate, there are children starving in __” argument just stated differently. Red delicious apples suck and if we dropped into a depression where that was my only option that isn’t going to suddenly make them taste good and I’ll complain the whole time eating them.

>Red Delicious are famously reviled, and for good reason

Famously reviled by whom? Could this be selection bias at play? I personally have never met a real-world person who disliked them as singularly as Internet hipsters do. Opinions range from "my fav" to "not my fav".

>You're allowed to be that one person that them

Ah, I've got my work cut out for me*, visiting every single grocery store and buying up their most abundant supply of apples. Surely they cannot be ordering them due to popularity.

* (Red delicious is not even my favourite, just a regular apple).

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